Masculinity in Modern Europe
Questions for Theme 3: Fears for the Modern Man
Braudy, chap. 35
1. What were three trends or events that Europeans thought indicated national degeneracy?
2. How was the fear of degeneracy connected to racism?
3. In what ways did Europeans link the nation and the male body?
Tosh, ch. 9 "The New Imperialism"
4. Which was it? Did worries about maintain the empire cause a concern for masculinity at home, or did concerns about masculinity at home cause a greater interest in empire building?
5. What two institutions developed in the late 19th century reflect a desire to cultivate imperial values and character in men? [section I]
6. What masculine needs or desires did imperialism did the fantasy or reality of empire fulfill? [section II]
7. What were two in middle-class men's lives that heightened their interest in pursuing life in the colonies? [section III]
Scouting for Boys and The Household Physician
8. Why should boys learn military skills?
9. B-P says that peace scouts are "real men in every sense of the word." How so?
10. How should a scout treat a woman? How does his treatment enhance his manliness?
11. Compare the advice on masturbation in The Household Physician to that in Scouting For Boys. Compare these views with Christopher Forth's discussion on theories about the fears of over-refinement and degeneration (see Forth pp. 98-101; also p. 151)
Forth, Chapter 6: "Modern Primitives"
12. According to turn-of-the-century evolutionary thought, what traits demonstrated white men's more advanced evolution?
13. In what ways was it feared that civilization would lead to degeneration?
14. What are two ways that men in clerical professions attempted to assert their masculinity?
15. What were the purposes of the pursuit of muscularity at the turn of the 20th century?
Braudy, chap. 34; 36
16. What fears did stories like Jekyll and Hyde and Dracula reflect? (ch. 34)
17. What is one reason why Europeans/Americans were fascinated and worried about sexual "perversions" in the late 19th century? (ch. 36)
18. How did Oscar Wilde's trial and notoriety affect the public view of homosexuals? (ch. 36)
McDevitt, chap. 1: "Gender and Imperial Sport"
19. How could sports both build and undermine power relationships?
20. What is the difference between the middle-class and working-class approach to sportsmanship?
21. What was the "games revolution," and how responsible was Thomas Arnold for it?
McDevitt, chap. 4: "May the Best White Man Win"
22. What is distinctive about boxing in comparison to other sports in the modern era, and why did it carry so much significance for ideas of manliness and national pride?
23. In what ways did middle and upper-class men participate in boxing? Was this participation manly?
24. Why was Jack Johnson a threat to the British people, and why was he barred from fighting in England?
McDevitt, chap. 5: "Defending White Manhood: The Bodyline Affair"
25. What were the "economic, social and gender tensions" that combined to create the desire of English cricketers to take the radical step of inventing the Bodyline method?
26. What were English arguments that the Australians were lesser men? What was the counter-argument from the Australians?
27. What is "good form," and why did the English refuse to think that Australians had it?